South Africa: Forensic Investigator - Patients Denied Knowledge of Physio in the Department of Labour Fraud Case

press release

A forensic investigator told the Pretoria Magistrate's Court on 22 November, that fraud physiotherapist Jurry Sehunoe has denied knowledge of patients he was alleged to have treated, following payments to him that were processed by the two alleged fraud accused in the matter involving the Department of Labour.

The forensic investigator told the Court that even patients, that were said to have been treated by Sehunoe have also denied his identity nor ever being treated by him. The expert further told the Court that some of the 'fictitious' patients that were said to have been treated by Sehunoe were white people, and Sehunoe had submitted a sworn statement that he had never treated a white patient in his surgery.

The forensic investigator was testifying in the trial of two former employees of the Department of Labour's Compensation Fund (CF) in the case involving alleged fraud of R2,1-million.

Maxwell Ramaphosa (36) and Samuel Mfeleng (36) - both from Soshanguve in Pretoria face 15 counts of fraud and 26 counts of money laundering. The duo is alleged to have been working in collaboration with Sehunoe, a physiotherapist from Rustenburg in North West, to defraud the department. Sehunoe has since pleaded guilty in the matter and is awaiting sentencing.

The investigator told the Court that Ramaphosa and Mfeleng used claim numbers of cases being processed or those finalised in the system to concoct new claims and later process them with exorbitant payments.

The forensic investigator further told the Court that all the source documents that were handled by the two accused could not be traced in the archives, that were stored both manually and electronically.

According to the forensic investigator, Ramaphosa and Mfeleng were assigned to process claims lodged from Gauteng South Region, however, they breached their mandate and processed claims beyond the scope of their jurisdiction without any authority.

The investigator told the Court that in 2009 there was a once-off claim of R260 000 that was paid to Sehunoe, after it was processed by Ramaphosa and Sehunoe, an amount that was way-off the norm raise suspicion.

The Court was told that some of the patients that were said to have been treated by Sehunoe (physiotherapist), despite operating in Rustenburg, come as far as Cape Town. The forensic investigator further said this was strange in that, how could a person staying as far as Cape Town travel to North West to receive a routine physiotherapy treatment?

The expert submitted that Ramaphosa and Mfeleng used the bank account of Sehunoe's friend's driving school business to deposit the laundered money which was later shared.

Ramaphosa and Mfeleng are out on a bail of R3000 and the matter has been postponed to February 27.

The Compensation Fund is a public entity of the Department of Labour. The fund provides cushion for workers injured during work or diseases sustained.

A forensic investigator told the Pretoria Magistrate's Court on 22 November, that fraud physiotherapist Jurry Sehunoe has denied knowledge of patients he was alleged to have treated, following payments to him that were processed by the two alleged fraud accused in the matter involving the Department of Labour.

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